With a quality bowling line-up ahead of him, Devon Conway made a magnificent double-century and became the seventh player to make a double hundred on Test debut. With Devon Conway doing a magical job, he has bought to light the six men who have achieved a similar feat. Let us now look at the six names before Devon Conway himself.
Tip Foster, 287 Vs. Australia, Sydney 1903
Tip Foster is the first player to make a double century on debut and did it quite a few years ago. The first debut double century came nearly a hundred and eighteen years before Devon Conway’s effort. The score continues to be the highest by a batsman on debut, and it came at a crucial time for England.
The England Cricket team struggled when Foster came out to bat, but the debutant stood for seven hours and dominated Australia. The innings broke many records back then, and Foster finished with the highest score in Test Cricket up until that moment. His 287 was also the highest by a batsman visiting Australia until Ross Taylor broke it in 2015 with his 290 at Perth.
Jacques Rudolph, 222 Vs. Bangladesh, Chattogram, 2003
After Foster Jacques, Rudolph got the closest to achieving the record of the highest score on debut. Rudolph was unbeaten on 222 and was going well on a pitch that offered runs. If given more time, he may have crossed Foster, but the innings were ended by Graeme Smith as South Africa looked to push for a win.
South Africa won the game in the end, and Rudolph got off to a good start in an unusual career. Before his Test debut, Rudolph played a Test against India, which was unofficial after India raised issues against the match referee. Rudolph managed only five more centuries in 47 matches as the quota system and form kept him out of the side at various periods.
Lawrence Rowe, 214 Vs. New Zealand, Jamaica, 1972
When New Zealand toured the West Indies in 1972, the bowling attack was not the strongest, and that helped the West Indies. Facing a weaker bowling attack allowed Lawrence Rowe shows his stylish batting ability. He made 214 in the first innings, batting for seven hours, and followed it with another hundred.
He finished the match with 314 runs, which is the most by a player on debut and is the only player with a double hundred and a hundred on debut. He was technically sound but couldn’t stack up the numbers, and his career faded soon.
Mathew Sinclair, 214 vs West Indies, Wellington, 1999
While Devon Conway made a superb double century debut, he wasn’t the first to do so from his country. Before Devon Conway, former wicket-keeper Mathew Sinclair made a double century on debut. His knock came against the West Indies, and he made his runs at a brisk pace. The wicket-keeper made another double century in his 12th Test but could not add to his early tally. His career faded soon as he finished with an average of 32.
Kyle Mayers, 210 vs Bangladesh, Chattogram, 2021
Over the years, Bangladesh has become a strong side at home and has also done well in the Test format. Winning in Bangladesh is not an easy task, and to do so chasing on a day five pitch is even more unlikely.
Before Devon Conway, 2021 witnessed another magnificent debut double hundred from Kyle Mayers. With 395 to chase, his side was 59 for three. The target looked impossible on a turning final day pitch. Kyle Mayers, along with another debutant, Nkrumah Bonner, stitched a partnership together and got West Indies close to the target.
Despite a few wickets towards the end, Kyle Mayers managed to steer his side to victory. The win was an unlikely won, and the contribution came from an unlikely source. With several senior players opting out, Kyle Mayers got an opportunity and cemented his spot in style.
Brendan Kurrupu, 201 Vs. New Zealand, Colombo, 1987
Brendan Kurrupu, a wicket-keeper for Sri Lanka, made his debut on a dead track. The pitch did not allow quick scoring, but both innings were incomplete despite the game going for five days. Brendan Kurrupu played 548 balls for his score and was on the field for the entire duration of the Test match. He made his first century in all first-class Cricket but could only play three more Tests.